Comfrey, True (Symphytum officinalis) root crown cutting, organic

(19 customer reviews)

$7.00$440.90

Please note:  True comfrey root crown cuttings are shipped year ’round.  When you order them, you can expect to receive your roots via us mail about 2 weeks from the order date.  If you require a different shipping window, please let us know by using the “order comments” field at checkout.  When planted in the garden or in a large pot by completely covering the root cutting with soil, comfrey roots will grow for anyone, any time.

Family:  Borage (Boraginacea)

Hardy in Zones 3 to 9

Herbaceous perennial native to Europe.  True Comfrey is the original herb as detailed in all the ancient literature. Traditional usage (TWM): used externally to speed healing.  Source of allantoin, which proliferates cell growth, making things grow faster, which is one of the reasons it is so often employed in an orchard and garden context–it is the quintessential all-around companion plant.  True Comfrey prefers full sun and regular garden soil.  Good drainage is helpful (add sand and organic matter to clayey soil) and frequent watering is also helpful.  To plant a true comfrey root, find a spot with good sun and rich soil. Plant the root with root down and crown up, burying the crown by at least an inch of soil.  Water the spot.  The Comfrey will soon send leaves up through the soil surface and… you’re off!  After the plant reaches the late flowering stage, simply cut it back and lay the leaves back down on the crown.  It will regrow through its own mulch.

Crown Cutting, Certified Organically Grown

Uses: Comfrey is commonly used in permaculture as a companion plant to fruit trees.  In the nursery, we have great results making the fresh leaves into biodynamic tea, which we apply to our plants in a pot to increase vitality, growth, and to green up all those leaves! Excellent ingredient for compost piles–fresh leaves compost fast and make a nitrogen-rich compost!  Fresh, rubbed leaves fed to ruminants, pigs and chickens to increase health and as a protein-rich nutrient dense feed.  Traditional usage of fresh or dried leaves or roots (TWM):  used externally to speed healing. Source of cell-proliferating molecule alantoin.

What is a root crown cutting?  A chunk of the crown of the plant (the blocky part above the taproots), often with a piece of the taproot attached.  Size is variable.  We give generous cuttings, from 2 to 6 inches long, generally as big around as your thumb, often larger, sometimes smaller–a mix.  These are the SAME CUTTINGS that we use for replanting our own fields, and horticulturally speaking, this is the best size and shape to replant in order to get fast results.  This is NOT just a piece of the taproot, which generally takes longer to grow to a full sized plant than the more desirable crown cutting.

How to plant:  Space the plants at least 2 feet apart.  Comfrey prefers rich soil of medium moisture in the sun to part shade.  It is a heavy feeder and will reach monumental size if given composted manure under the cutting at transplant and/or around the crown of the plant during the growth cycle. To plant the cutting, prepare a weed-free area of 1 foot square, fertilize the spot with compost, then bury the cutting in the center of that spot, completely covering the cutting with soil to the depth of 1 or 2 inches.  Do not leave the cutting exposed–let it sprout spontaneously up through the soil.  This will take about 2 weeks–you will see the bright green leaves emerging.

How to care for comfrey plants:  Keep the planting reasonably well watered. It works very nicely to mulch the plant with straw, other high-carbon mulch, or even its own leaves, cut from the plant and laid back down around the crown.  This is the standard way to take care of comfrey–when it finishes flowering and starts to keel over, cut it down and use the leaves for any of the multitude of applications comfrey leaves are good for, or simply lay the leaves back down on the crown of the plant and let it grow back through its own mulch.  In the temperate zone, this cycle usually occurs 2 or three times per summer.  The only way to get rid of comfrey is to stop watering it and let the plant dry out, or to drown the plant in water.  Otherwise, the plant will stay around.  Many people plant comfrey in the orchard, as it brings up minerals from deep within the earth that are good for fruit trees, and because it nourishes the trees with its fallen and composted leaves.  The above directions are suitable for comfrey culture in orchards, and traditionally at least one plant is planted per tree.  You can mow over the plants if necessary–they will re-emerge.

For more information on use of comfrey in the home garden and for use of comfrey in herbal medicine, including appropriate directions for safe usage in home health care, please read “Growing Plant Medicine” and “Making Plant Medicine.”

 

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5 out of 5 stars

19 reviews

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17 reviews with a 5-star rating

  1. Tristan

    Easy peasy Comfrey

    Tristan (verified owner)

    One of the comfrey cuttings I planted I believe last summer (currently right behind a row of Hopi sunflowers) and they really shot up a bunch within the last month from when they were just emerging. It’s really cool and enjoyable to just plant root cuttings for nice, quick and healthy plant starts. Awesome!

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  2. Jolie

    Vigorous, vibrant plant

    Jolie

    I got 3 root cuttings last spring of 2023. They grew just fine last summer, and took off like wildfire one year later. Large, vibrant plants. I made comfrey salve last autumn and plan to make even more this year. Excellent medicinal value. Highly recommend for every gardener, especially those who are keen on natural healing methods. WA state, zone 8b.

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  3. Wendy Ribelin

    Huge plant!

    Wendy Ribelin (verified owner)

    This is the second year for this plant, and it has already begun to spread. It is huge and such a nice addition to my garden.

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  4. jmfsenior

    Pretty little darling

    jmfsenior (verified owner)

    Feel in love with her as soon as I saw her. Darling little crown healthy as can be. In a couple weeks green and thriving in a gulf coaster spring. Now I’m wondering why it took me so long to add her to the garden.

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  5. itatane

    Off like a shot!

    itatane (verified owner)

    Owing to the uncertainties of NEONWPA weather, I started it in my 47 degree basement under an LED shop light, in a 1 gallon pail. Kept it evenly watered every few days, and it is doing exceedingly well. (6 inch sprouts above the soil!) My only regret is that I did not order more root cuttings.

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  6. spice.farm

    Magnificent Specimens

    spice.farm (verified owner)

    As usual, super healthy crowns arrived in mailbox yesterday morning, in the earth again yesterday afternoon. Looking forward to watching these beauties grow into my orchard

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  7. One person found this helpful
    Melissa

    Hardy plant!

    Melissa (verified owner)

    I was negligent and didn’t mark where I planted my cutting Then, a few days later, I dug it up accidentally and broke off part of the new growth! But now I have TWO plants coming up. These cuttings are ditz-proof. And, they are doing great in partial shade in zone 9B.

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  8. JoAnn McCulley

    JoAnn McCulley (verified owner)

    These came very healthy and nicely packed. I can’t wait to see them grow.

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  9. Dustin Bryant

    What An Amazing Plant!

    Dustin Bryant (verified owner)

    Thank you for the option to purchase these amazing True Comfrey live roots. I followed the the instructions that came with it, and while I am preparing my garden, I planted this live root into a 1 gallon pot with a fairly rich mulch/soil and to make sure it remains moist with good draining. I can say, this plant is very hearty and has been growing superbly. Thank you again.

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  10. Claire J. Barnwell

    Looks very promising!!

    Claire J. Barnwell (verified owner)

    My Comfrey is emerging and looks so healthy! Can’t wait to see the whole plant! All of the plants I’ve received from you are healthy, very well packaged for shipping and are doing very well. You folks are fantastic!

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  11. One person found this helpful
    Marjorie Boggess

    Quick start! Vigorous Growth!

    Marjorie Boggess (verified owner)

    I’d never had success growing comfrey from seeds, so I thought I’d give the cuttings a try. I went with five instead of one, “just in case” — no need! The cuttings arrived promptly, I brought them inside, forgot about them for a couple of days, and then potted them in 1 gal pots in good organic potting soil. Had the pots soaking in 2″ of water for the first 24 hours. I think the first one peeked out with new green growth within two days. Two weeks later, and they’re full and vigorous, and starting to make buds even though I have them hiding under a seedling table in a south-facing window. Hoping they can go outside soon, and be able to handle our summer heat (usually 34-35 days over 100, the rest of summer in the mid-high 90s until October).
    Extremely pleased with this purchase so far. Thank you 🙂

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  12. Crissy Crutchfield

    Just wonderful

    Crissy Crutchfield (verified owner)

    Beautiful and large crown cuttings that were already sending up shoots on arrival! A month later I’ve already gathered enough leaves to make 2 salves! Strictly medicinal has captured my heart and my business! ❤️

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  13. Jaclyn

    Happy plant ….

    Jaclyn (verified owner)

    So easy to grow from the root cutting I received, it just took off after I put it in ground. And as a bonus, the resident hummingbird took a liking to it….

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  14. One person found this helpful
    Sam Hurley

    Sam Hurley (verified owner)

    I ordered and planted last fall. Nice healthy chunks of root. All came up this spring and are doing well. Some already have beautiful rich purple flowers. Thanks again. You guys are the best. Sam

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  15. True comfrey

    Beautiful roots

    True comfrey (verified owner)

    This is such a nice plant, after two weeks this is how much it grew. Beautiful roots, healthy and extremely happy with purchase, would highly recommend.

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  16. Ann

    Beautiful crowns

    Ann

    I received a beautiful, healthy crown this past fall. I planted it in a container and it immediately growing. This spring, it looks spectacular – very happy, once again – you guys rock!

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  17. Deborah L Hall

    Comfrey roots

    Deborah L Hall

    I planted the root of comfrey last fall. I was concerned because it turned cold soon after planting it, but there is new growth coming up quickly now. Thank you very much.

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